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Grow Hops Hydroponically

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Looking for some new applications of hydroponics? Maybe you've done a lot of the regular old ho-hum stuff with vegetables or tomatoes and cucumbers, and herbs like basil and oregano. You want to do something new -- you want to branch out and do something really innovative.

What about hops?

You know, those leafy buds used to make beer. Maybe you're into home brewing, and maybe you’re not. Either way, you can get on the bandwagon with one of the trendiest types of hydroponic projects around -- growing hops to provide vibrant taste for microbrews.

So how do you go about growing hops? Here are some essential steps to getting these plants in good shape for harvests.

Allow for height

Hops plants grow several feet tall, so make sure that your grow space is aligned vertically for this type of crop. You may also be able to train hops according to different technics like sea of green or screen of green by using chickenwire or other materials to get plants to grow along with the light. These techniques are similar to those for growing other bud-producing plants.

Get well draining grow media

Hops do best in well-drained soil, so in hydro growing, you want to have a grow media that drains as well, and you have to work with the irrigation schedule that you set up. Items like rock wool and coco coir are favorites, as well as vermiculite.

Get a good nutrient package

Just like any other types of plants, hops will need enough nitrogen and other top minerals to thrive. You can add certain kinds of proteins and other things to really boost plant production and get larger, denser or thicker buds.

Set pH level

In general, plants thrive at around 5 to 6 ph. Hops might do well in this range, or even a little higher according to some growers. You'll have to do some trial and error to figure out the right ph value foryour space.

Get light to hops

Yes, hops need light. According to some who have been successful with cultivating this stuff, you can get away with 6 to 8 hours of light per day, but other growers tend to start with an always on 24-hour cycle and give plants some relief from the light as they grow.

Tend your reservoir

For most conventional hydroponic systems, you need big enough reservoirs to keep irrigation water when it's not in use. Some growers recommend a 45 pound container where you can mix your nutrients, set PH value and otherwise handle what’s in the hydroponic water.

For more tips on growing all kinds of hops and other products, check out Dealzer and see how we recommend using your gear.

 
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